Yes, I’ve been gone. I’ve been busy. I’ve had some orders. I was getting ready for the shows and I’ve learned to make free 30 sec videos.
That was worth being gone a couple of weeks, right? The numbers for July look good. Everything is better over this time last year. I am very hopeful about the fall.
I am also beginning to branch out again in the blog and the shop. I’ve added afghans back to the Etsy site. I will work on the Zibbet site for afghans and home decor but I don’t ever seem to get there. I should because I updated to a premium site there and I don’t want to waste the money.
I am going to be working with someone else on Etsy to bring more support and stories about the folks who sell their wares there. For a great many of them this economy has led them to take their financial lives into their own hands to feed their families.
So you see, I haven’t just been hiding from the heat. Though I don’t see how anyone could blame me for doing that.
Tonight are the opening ceremonies for the Olympics and I must select something to cast on and make during the games….I have about an hour so I have to go!!
OK, so circumstances which are not bloggable prevented me from attending my knitting group meeting today at the Latvian Community Center – I didn’t know there was one of those, either and I wanted to see it. But I couldn’t. I was supposed to be elsewhere. Supposed to be…asked to be…almost told to be and as I was prepared to be elsewhere…a storm hit and then I was told not to be. First, I had to wait because there could not be a mixing of the sun and hot weather. Then because of the rain.
Then, I am supposed to start a new project today – yes there are other projects in progress but the system is the system and it works because it is the system. Don’t buck the system. It helps keep me at my current level of sanity – that’s right; just imagine it without the buffer.
I was, right until this very moment, unsure about what fiber I wanted to use for the new project. Then I turned my head to the right and saw a skein of yarn in a yarn closet bin (don’t you love it?) that would be great for the hat I want to knit.
It is the exact same yarn I want to use to make the kid’s poncho I want to make which, when I look to the left at the bookshelf, is coming up in approximately three projects.
“Well, certainly,” you say out loud to the computer screen, “you have enough to make both.”
“Why no,” I say back to you. “Perhaps not.” A quick check of the yarn inventory list (thank you, Mr. Honey) shows I have three skeins of this fiber in the harvest color. Three skeins of 197 yards. It occurs to me there might not be enough to make the poncho. Definitely enough to make the hat. Maybe not enough to make the poncho. I need to check how much fiber this poncho takes. I’ve made the poncho before. Heck, I’ve sold several of them.
It takes 300 yards or fiber to make the smallest size poncho. That would take 2 of the skeins. So, I can do them both. Alas, not that simple.
You see, these things will go on sale in the shop. Which means if someone wants more than one, I have to be able to provide it and a quick check of the yarn stores here and in AZ where I go to when I can’t find a yarn here (I don’t actually go there. I call, they ship. Except when I actually do go there then I shop and ship) and I do not see this particular color anymore. Which means I have to either find the color that’s really close (how does this word mean both near to and to cease from being open?) or I have to maximize what I can make – which means no poncho but hats.
But that isn’t even as easy as it seems because the line is being discontinued. So what I have in stock – is all that I will ever have. So these three balls will not be a poncho. Instead, it can become a limited edition hat. Or a trim on a bunch of hats so it can be stretched. Since it is mostly acrylic that can work.
These are the things one has to think about. So I am back at square one. I don’t know what I want to use for the hat. And I can’t think about it right now because Mr. Honey is telling me I need to make bread because he wants BLTs for dinner.
I had an order that is now all packed and ready to go.
The needles are full – there’s two afghans, arm warmers (that I had to start over, simplest pattern in the world and I forgot to switch the needles when I was supposed to right before the last step. Believe me, makes a difference), the hat part of a man cap and neck warmer set and probably something else that I can’t remember at the moment.
These projects have found me going through the yarn stash with great regularity which has its fun moments. With every new project, I pull out some new yarn. This comes in handy when I am working on the granny square afghan because whatever colors are pulled for the other projects, the leftovers are used in the granny square afghan which is being done in a background of olive green. I need 80 of these squares and I am hoping I have enough of the olive green (which I can actually remember purchasing for the purpose of making an afghan) to get through the 80 squares. I should have enough I mean 1 more than half a skein from the one I’ve started and a whole one waiting. There’s probably more sitting in one of the many places yarn has been known to hide and breed in. OK, my yarn doesn’t actually hide. You don’t have to hide when you know you’re in control of the territory and the yarn knows it’s definitely in control.
The fun part is seeing the other colors that are coming. Because my thing this year or season is the color wheel, I am making these squares and when I go to put them together I will have one of my two trusty color wheels with me. Some of these squares will be white and I will dot those through to try and break up some color strains and there’s gray as well which is a neutral so putting this all together will be quite fun. The great thing is at the end of it I will have a OOAK (one of a kind) afghan to go into the Zibbet shop.
Today starts the official Etsy Christmas in July. Go over and look at stuff to see if you might want to get a jump start on that Christmas thing – which is less than six months away – just saying.
Just as a follow-up to yesterday – went downstairs to finish off the bottle of soda only to find it had been finished already and there is still not a replacement in sight. But I am going to be cool about it. I figure this is payback for me having had some leftover something or another that Mr. Honey was craving. This has happened and he has exacted his revenge. Fine. I will be grown up. At least until the right opportunity for me to revert to childhood presents itself. Besides, he has provided another bloggable moment.
Mr. Honey is handy. He is quite handy. He can put in electric wiring, build walls and make stuff. He is so handy I am sure Davy Crockett would have said to Mrs. Crockett: “I’m heading over to the Honeys, Mr. Honey has a new taxidermy process I’m dying to see.”
Yesterday when I asked him what he was up to he said, “Chores.” Chores? Really? Other than thinking who calls them ‘chores’ any more and trying to get over the guilt that I don’t have ‘chores’ or the desire to do some obvious housework which could count as a chore, I had a hat order to fill and wished him well.
Some hours later as I stepped into the kitchen to make dinner. I noticed the door leading to the outside was open. This in itself is nothing new. The act of closing a door whether it be on a cabinet or, it seems, a house, seems to elude this otherwise handy guy. So, I went to close it and lock it when I noticed there were holes in the door.
Where there would normally be a handle.
Where there would normally be a lock. The place where my keys usually are.
Where there would normally be a latch.
You what else was missing? Mr. Honey. He was upstairs watching the T and V. Anyone else thinking something’s a little off or is it just me?
I had to go back up anyway and on my way past the bedroom, I peeked in to see him on the bed watching the T and V.
“So, you know there’s nothing on the door to close the door, right?”
“Oh, yeah, but the screen door is locked.”
Oh, well, as long as the entirely glass door that is the only barrier between us and the outside world that clearly shows there’s nothing to secure the big wooden door is locked.
I think my response was “OK.” This is a lesson to all men who have women in their lives. When we say OK to something where OK isn’t an obvious answer, it never is. OK is the equivalent to so many other responses ranging from: ‘this isn’t over’ to ‘is the life insurance premium paid up.’ But it never means OK as in ‘fine’. And if we actually say ‘fine’, you should duck.
We have dinner and later when I go into the kitchen to clean the dishes, I look at the door and there are holes where the handle should be and there are holes where the latch should be but my keys are there in the lock. So the door is locked. No handle or latches but the door is locked. With the keys to the garage (where the Corvette is) and the car keys dangling in the lock on a door with no closures behind the all glass door which is locked.
The school spirit headband is now available in the shop.
You know your life has taken a turn when you view it through ‘bloggable moments.’
One such moment occurred yesterday. Mr. Honey does our grocery shopping – yes, you can add that to the ‘you’re so spoiled’ pile but it really doesn’t belong there. He used to take his mom grocery shopping every weekend. It was one of their things and I did some incidental grocery shopping every week for those things he didn’t get. When she passed he said he wanted to continue the shopping. Which I understand. I still do some incidental shopping but not a lot because he covers most everything.
Anyway, he bought some Fanta Grape Soda – full strength. Which happens to be my favorite soda from when I was a child and which – no one can explain – can get me drunk. Not Otis-put-myself- in – a-cell drunk (watch old episodes of Andy Griffith for those not in the know.) But it has the ability to make me really happy. Something I confessed to Mr. Honey a long time ago and I never purchase it for myself because my soft drinks of choice at home are sugar free.
But he purchased one of the big ass liter bottles, (which he delighted in telling me “I got you some Fanta Grape, honey!”) and I had a glass last weekend and put the bottle in the fridge. I went to get a glass yesterday and noticed the bottle was more than half gone.
I actually stood there and contemplated whether I had drank some while sleepwalking. I dismissed the thought when I noted I didn’t wake up drunk or really happy – at least no more than normal. So that left only one explanation.
Duke had come back from doggie heaven and had himself a drink. Apparently canines have thumbs in heaven. Eventually, I dismissed that thought because in the almost fifteen years he walked the earth, he didn’t drink flavored sodas.
So, I thought I’d ask the obvious person the obvious question: Did you drink my Fanta grape?” (Yes, just like that with the emphasis on my fanta grape.)
“Yeah, it’s got a nice flavor.” I did not expect the obvious answer. I was pulling the bottle out at the time and pouring some in a glass when he said, with great attitude, “Am I going to have to go to the store to buy some more?” And had the nerve to stand there looking at me with, get this, a hand on his hip.
Oh hell, no.
“You mean, will you have to get more before your regular shopping day because you drank my soda thus having it run out before the week is over? Is that the question you’re asking?”
“No, well, I was just asking because it’s on sale this week and I was thinking I should go and get some before it goes off sale because I don’t want to pay the regular price. I’ll go get some tomorrow.”
He then proceeded to go over to the table where he has his sales circular, look it up and say: “If I buy four bottles, I can get them for 59 cents each.”
OK, things are moving along. The heat wave seems to have broken. I actually took a walk last night about 10:30 and it was pleasant outside. It was…dare I say it..cool.
Maybe it was cooler. But it was pleasant. We ate outside two nights ago and it looks like we’ll be able to do it again tonight. Mr. Honey has discovered corn on the grill. Grant you someone discovered it ages ago but Mr. Honey has discovered it this season which means he’s experimenting making it. Remember he’s been that way with cookies and cakes which means he will be obsessive with it. Luckily, he’s been coming up with some good stuff and it’s not as bad for you as the cookies and cakes. We won’t be having it for a couple of days because it’s my time to cook and my new thing is bread. I’ve found a bread recipe that tastes so dang good. I make it once a week and tonight is the night for it.
On the knit front, there are two hats and a scarf that need to be photographed and placed in the shop and I am also running it a situation where a lot of the postings are expiring. So one morning I will have 125 items in the shops and wake up to find I have 120. For the briefest of moments I hope sales account for the difference and then reality checks in and I go take a look at the expired items. I won’t be adding them all back at the same time. I am limiting myself to listing or renewing two items a day. It’s a way to keep the inventory revolving and the Google bots interested.
I have a variation of a rasta hat on the needles but today I am going to be a hooker and work on the granny square afghan. I may even work on it outside if it doesn’t get too warm. I have to make 80 of the squares and I think I may have six of them done so this is going to take a few weeks to make.
I’ve also started the tortoise. It’s going to be smaller than I thought it would be and I gave thought to undoing the work I’ve done – the under shell is done – and making it bigger. I stopped myself before I did it. I stopped because though it is not as big as I imagined – or as big as the photos implied it would be – it will still be gosh awful cute.
I stopped because I will appreciate the smallness when people order it and I will not have to knit a big ass tortoise. I have moments of sanity. The main body will be a dark gray and the shell top is made up of a bunch of little shapes in different colors. The cuteness factor should be diabetic level.
We received the application to the Guerin Prep craft show. I am going to request a different location. We are in the cafeteria, I may ask for a move to the gym or to a spot closer to the door. I’ll have that in by the end of the month for the show in October.
I’ve been watching the Harry Potter movies because I wanted a look at the hats and scarves – I will have to recreate those – and I know why that woman is a billionaire now. Those are some good movies. Who knew?
OK, so a billion of you knew. Fine. Don’t be smart about it.
I find myself strangely sad. There is someone on Facebook who is a ‘friend’ because we share some common things not because we hang out and she’s been posting some, I can’t call them Republican and I can’t call them conservative because I have relatives and friends who are both and they don’t come close to the things she’s been reposting. She admits to being an alarmist.
That has me sad. Someone wants to be an alarmist. Think about that. It’s different from being the town crier. It’s different from being on neighborhood watch. It is someone who purposely creates false or needless panic.
Here’s the thing: if what you believe is right. If what you believe is true. Why do you need to create panic. The truth should be enough. You don’t need to hit folks over the head or spread lies, half-truths and falsehoods. Just state the truth. Not everyone will believe you but that’s because everyone has the same right to believe or not as any other person in a free or captive world. Don’t worry about it if I don’t believe you – just stick with the truth.
There is someone in the world I have to admit to hating. Just one person. I don’t think of them everyday but on those days when they come to mind, I do ask myself if this is the day I will let it go and so far the answer has come back ‘nope.’ But I wouldn’t lie about them because the truth about them is enough and what I am discovering is that slowly people are coming to the same conclusion I came to. They don’t hate her and I don’t wish they would but the truth is coming out. I didn’t have to ring a bell – though I wanted to.
Hating someone isn’t my best moment. This person hates the president. Lots of people hate the president. And they cannot give a good reason why.
“I hate his policies!” Which ones? That question is a stump.
“He’s a Muslim.” What’s wrong with being a Muslim? “Muslims were responsible for attacking the US.” OK, if I use that logic then the Catholic church needs to be run out of town on a rail. After all, not only were there pedophile priest – but cardinals, bishops and Vatican staff knew about it. They did nothing and tried to deny then cover it up. They moved priests from one area to another where they could scar and ruin the lives of many all over again.
So when do you want to start tearing down the Catholic schools because we can’t let them near kids. This is a worldwide attack and it had a tremendous impact in the United States. Certainly if an entire religion is responsible for three thousand deaths, countless injuries and scars then an entire religion must be responsible for scars, injuries and death of the children who were assaulted.
I don’t think people hate as much as they fear. And because we don’t often like to face our fears – we’re fearful of them – we lash out as a way to deflect. Blame other folks so we don’t have to be responsible for ourselves to ourselves.
So instead some of us opt to becoming alarmists. “Look over there so you don’t look over here!”
It is sad how we are….
On the other hand – yes, I can make a completely different transition to yarn and other things:
I have a small refrigerator in my office. It’s a soda fridge and right now it is filled with three different kinds of soda. There’s Dr. Pepper, A&W Root Beer and Coke Zero (all sugar free.) The power went on and off a couple of times yesterday, the longest time being about an hour. I just pulled out a Dr. Pepper and opened it. Cold. Yes.
We have to find our silver linings where we can.
I am working on mittens today and then I am going to start on another toy from the same place I got the snake (finally a post that connects to the photo!) I am thinking of doing another snake or a tortoise. The snake is easier but the tortoise will be something different and I am thinking I will feel great if I can accomplish it. Leaning towards the tortoise. Can get ahead of myself though – the mittens aren’t complete.
OK, I’m back now. I know I’ve been absent. It’s been really hot here. It’s been really hot everywhere. But my friend Martin says there’s no such thing as global warming. That the earth will just absorb everything and regenerate.
But then again he loves hot weather.
Trying knitting in this heat. It’s hot knitting in the air conditioned comfort of my house. It is so hot I don’t think it’s ever going to be cool again.
The last we spoke I was leaning towards doing the Park Ridge show. But I am not going to do it. Talked myself right out of it. I thought with the Christmas in July promo at the shop. I wouldn’t have time to create for the shows and fulfill orders. It made sense at the time. But with the weather so hot across the country I don’t think folks will be doing more than window shopping. I am getting a comfortable number of lookers and they are marking some items as favorites so that might mean something good as we get cooler weather – if that ever happens – the fall, winter, holiday season has me feeling quite optimistic.
New items are being added. 17 news things within the past few weeks. I have a couple of things that still need to be photographed. I’m not sure what’s the next thing to go on the needles or hooks will be. There’s a couple of afghans already started but I am working on those sparingly as the last thing I want is to have a heavy afghan sitting in my lap as I knit it up. I know what’s coming up is another man cap but this one will be part of a set with the hat and with a neck warmer. (Think cowl but snug around the neck.)
I think the next thing is actually a redo of the classic crochet slouch but I am going to do it in a chunky weight yarn. I have it in worsted weight acrylic and in cotton but I’m thinking it might be interesting in a thicker weight yarn. This idea comes to me because I am sitting at my desk in the office which, of course, has yarn on it and there’s a hunk of soft, chunky weight yarn in front of me. Talking to me. You wouldn’t be able to hear it unless you were one of the yarned masses. But yarn does have a voice and this small chunk, not enough on its own to make a hat, is telling me I still have some of its brethren left from the cowl I made (very cute cowl will be in the shop soon.) and I should make the hat and it will look nice too because it’s a nice looking fiber.